Special Concerns During Pregnancy

When to Call Your Care Team

Call your pregnancy care team right away if you have any of the following:

If it's after regular office hours, call Group Health's Consulting Nurse Service.

Intimate Partner Violence

Some partners might react to a woman's pregnancy with violent behavior. Even if this behavior comes and goes, it's still a danger to you and to your family. Any injury to you could also hurt your unborn baby.

If your partner or anyone else threatens or hurts you, get help right away. You can always talk to a member of your care team at Group Health and ask for help.

Listeria and Toxoplasmosis

Listeria and toxoplasmosis can cause serious problems in an unborn baby. Both are found in undercooked meats (including deli meats and hot dogs), certain cheeses and unpasteurized milk products, and unwashed fruits and vegetables.

Follow these precautions:

Cat feces can also carry toxoplasmosis. If you have a cat, ask someone else to clean the litter box every day. If you have to clean the litter box, do so daily and wear rubber gloves and a face mask. After cleaning a litter box or working in a garden (which outdoor cats might use as a litter box), wash your hands thoroughly. Testing for toxoplasmosis isn't recommended because the results can be misleading and unclear.

Cytomegalovirus (CMV)

CMV is a herpes virus in the same group of viruses that cause chickenpox and shingles. CMV can cause serious problems in newborn babies. This virus can be transmitted from a woman to her unborn baby during pregnancy, so it's important for you to reduce your risk of exposure to CMV.

Follow these precautions to avoid exposure to substances that might contain CMV:

If you work closely with children and are at risk of being exposed to CMV infection while you're pregnant, follow the precautions above and always wear gloves when working with infected babies.

From the "Birth Day News" series

Clinical review by Jane Dimer, MD
Group Health
Reviewed 03/01/2014